Brrrr! It’s getting cold out there!
We’ve already had a sneak peek of winter, leading us to pull the sweaters out of the closet and turn on the heat in our homes. While we want to feel cozy when the temperature dips, heating our homes in cold weather months can result in rising electricity bills.
Before winter hits, here are some facts to keep in mind:
- Holiday lighting, oven use, and additional guests can all increase the amount of electricity consumed by a household.
- Make sure you understand how your thermostat works – we mean really understand it. Check out this article in the Washington Post for tips.
But what can I do to take control of my electricity use in the winter?
- Stop Leaks: Caulk or weather strip doors and windows. A gap of just one-quarter inch can let in as much air as a softball-size hole. Also, an easy way to make sure your doors are sealed as tightly as possible is by locking them at all times.
- Unplug all appliances and chargers when not in use. Learn more about “vampire energy” in this blog post.
- Have your HVAC (Heating, Ventilation, and Air Conditioning) units serviced at least every other year.
- Replace air filters every month.
- Install a programmable thermostat to save energy while you are away from home. We recommend the Nest Learning Thermostat®! Try setting your thermostat to 68 degrees or lower in the winter.
- Set your water heater to 120 degrees and make sure it is well-insulated.
- Set your refrigerator temperature between 30 degrees and 42 degrees and your freezer between 0 degrees and 5 degrees. Keep your refrigerator full to reduce the amount of cold air lost each time you open the door.
Often, just adjusting your thermostat down a couple of degrees will make a big difference. Check out our Energy Saver Center for more tips!
You can also give our friendly Customer Care team a call to ask about average billing – a plan that helps smooth out the amount of your electric bills during the year. If you haven’t already locked in a fixed-rate plan, we can let you know about our pollution-free rate plan options as well!